Public notification: General Pathology

January 11, 2023 | Author: Royal College Staff

Notice of Request to Change General Pathology’s name to Diagnostic and Clinical Pathology

We are seeking feedback from members on a proposal from the Specialty Committee in General Pathology to change the name of the specialty to Diagnostic and Clinical Pathology.

Current Name Proposed Name Deadline for feedback
General Pathology Diagnostic and Clinical Pathology March 19, 2023

Rationale and process for change

The Specialty Committee in General Pathology has requested to change the name of the specialty to Diagnostic and Clinical Pathology. The specialty committee asserts that the name Diagnostic and Clinical Pathology more adequately describes the generalist nature of the discipline to allude to training and practice in diagnostic tissue pathology, in addition to clinical pathology, both of which are evolving to include new techniques and modalities, and the latter of which is not currently represented in the name. Corroborated by substantial support among the General Pathology community to proceed with a name change for the discipline, the specialty committee contends that this name change will increase visibility and interest from prospective trainees and foster greater understanding of the discipline among patients and the public.

The request was reviewed by the Royal College’s Committee on Specialties during their November 9-10, 2022, meeting. The committee agreed to proceed with the intent toward the change. They are now inviting feedback from stakeholders before a final decision is made.

Send your feedback by March 19, 2023

Stakeholders are invited to provide feedback concerning the request outlined above within sixty days of publication of this notice (January 18, 2023). Feedback can be forwarded to the Office of Standards and Assessment at

All feedback received within this timeframe will be used by the Royal College’s Office of Standards and Assessment in reaching a final decision regarding the above request. Should the application be accepted, a notice will be made to Royal College staff, committees, and stakeholders to this effect.


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Stephen Martin | January 18, 2023
I already had a clear understandng of the role of Pathologists. The proposed change does not clarify anything. Maybe they should diversify by actual expertise, ie histology, laboratory, forensic-necroscopy.
Catherine Halstead | January 18, 2023
I think this is an excellent idea. It is highly unfortunate, though, that this understanding and recognition of the practice of General Pathology comes some years after a Royal College decision that one of the major disciplines within Clinical Pathology, Medical Biochemistry, should become a subspecialty of Internal Medicine rather than a specialty under Pathology. Perhaps this understanding of the General Pathologist role occasions a re-look at Medical Biochemistry to realign it with Hematopathology and Medical Microbiology.
Dominic Pantalony | January 18, 2023
Does "Diagnostic Pathology" really equate with "Tissue Pathology" (Gross and Micro)? If not then the name "Diagnostic Pathology" would suffice. If confusion still exists then how about the generic term "Laboratory Medicine". "Pathobiology" is too cumbersome.